Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances by Sue Watson

3.5 Star

A year after she separated from her husband, Gianni, on Christmas Day, Chloe’s heart is still in pieces as she unpacks the decorations for her first ever festive holiday alone. That is, until the phone rings… 

It seems Gianni’s new seaside restaurant is in trouble and Chloe must go to Appledore to save the business – and him. Equally famous for his experimental culinary extravaganzas and his explosive temper, Gianni has been really stirring up a sensation with the locals – and not in a good way! 

As pans fly and the temperature in the kitchen rises, Chloe’s calming influence and magic touch might just get critics back on side in time to save the restaurant from sinking like a sad soufflĂ©. But will it be enough to save their marriage? 

Kathryn - 3.5 Star

This novel is one of a series set in the village of Appledore but it's a stand-alone novel and no prior knowledge of characters is required- though I loved being reunited with some of the same characters!

Gianni and Chloe's love story has a fair amount of twisty turns and we are in the present but given their history throughout the book.  I liked the way their story was presented in small bits to support their present phase with each other.  They clearly loved each other but their past was so filled with heartache and misunderstanding that they had decided to part ways.  When Chloe ends up being hired to help her ex-husband open his new restaurant I couldn’t help but think that this was an uncomfortable choice for all parties.

Gianni is a caricature of the egotistical chef- he shouts a lot, he’s demanding and due to his incomplete English language abilities he’s also frequently unclear in his instructions.  But he’s also passionate and loyal to a sense- for those he’s invested in at least. Chloe is smart and organised and clearly also passionate about her job. I had a hard time seeing her in the somewhat passive role she adopted when they were together. Correction- perhaps not passive exactly, but she did take the backseat to Gianni’s vision.  

Their reunion is prickly at first and they tiptoe around each other for most of the novel. I found their interactions realistic given the circumstances and truthfully wasn’t convinced that being together again was a good idea- but it’s a story of fiction so I had to accept that they could attempt to overcome their hurdles. 

The setting is delightful and the giggles available throughout- a lovely read.

Thank you to Bookouture for our review copy.  All opinions are our own.

Connect with Sue Watson:
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